Additional Financial Support

Whether they are called trusts, scholarships, endowments, grants or bursaries, there are many alternative sources of funding that can help you through your studies.

Due to the large number of trust funds available, we are unable to offer bespoke advice about funds you may be eligible for. However, whether you are looking for grants to pay tuition fees or top up your living cost support, this page is a good place to start.

Funds currently accepting applications

The following funds are currently open and accepting applications. Please read the information and guidance carefully to ensure your application has the best chance of success.

UWS Care Experienced Grant 2020

Through kind donations from the Hugh Fraser Foundation, Sylvia Aitken Trust and the W.A Cargill Fund, the University is pleased to welcome applications to the UWS Care Experienced Grant. A number of non-repayable awards are available, each worth £750, and designed to support eligible students as they begin their studies at UWS in the 2020/21 academic session.

Full eligibility criteria and application guidance is detailed in the UWS Care Experienced Grant 2020 Application Pack.

Purpose: The purpose of the fund is to support eligible students with the one-off costs that often occur at the start of term, when embarking on a new course of study. This may include purchasing new IT equipment, buying essentials for student residences, or the expenses associated with moving home. We understand that individual circumstances can differ, so it will be up to successful applicants to determine how best to use any award.

By providing financial support to contribute towards these one-off costs, UWS hopes that eligible students will have a positive experience as they begin their studies at UWS.

*We will adopt the definition of Care Experienced as used by Student Awards agency Scotland. This is a broad set of criteria covering various types of care experience,and we will help you if you are unsure if you fit these criteria.

Closing Date: **DEADLINE EXTENDED** The original closing date of 28th August 2020 has been extended as we have a number of grants to award. 

Completed application packs, with the required supporting evidence, can still be submitted but you should do so as soon as possible. Priority will be given to those who met the original closing date.

Keep an eye on this page as the fund will close quickly when all grants have been awarded, with no notice.

UWS Portfolio of Trusts

These are trust funds administered and managed within UWS.

Applicants should read the trust fund guidance notes and procedures for applicants which contains detailed information about our funds, including how to apply and how applications are assessed.

Applications are assessed on a competitive basis – there are limited funds and limited numbers of awards. As such, you should ensure that you take the time to show the panel why you should be selected for an award.

For more detail on how you can make your application stand out, and for samples of good and bad applications, see below:

How do trust funds work?

A trust fund is an amount of money that has been placed in custody of a trustee to be administered for the benefit of another (the beneficiary). At UWS, the Funding and Advice team administer a number of trust funds in addition to externally administered funds available to UWS students.

Each fund will be open and accepting applications for one defined period in the academic session. In order to be prepared and ensure you don’t miss an opportunity, you should read the details of each fund below which outlines the eligibility criteria and gives an indication as to when the fund will be open.

Lord Smith of Kelvin Bursary

The Lord Smith of Kelvin Bursary is designed to assist UWS students who exhibit academic merit, commitment and progress in their chosen course, but who may otherwise struggle to remain engaged in their studies due to personal or financial reasons.

You can apply for the Lord Smith of Kelvin Bursary if:

  • you are an undergraduate student in Year 2 (level 8) or above, studying in any subject area
  • you are Scottish by birth, and the first generation in your family to attend a higher education institution

This trust fund is available to students who need a little extra financial support to help them reach their full academic potential. As such, you will need to have applied to/received a decision from all statutory funding available. This includes bursaries, student loans and discretionary funds. You will also need to provide evidence demonstrating your need for this extra support, and show how it will help you throughout your studies.

If you meet the criteria and would like to apply, make a note in your diary to visit this page for more details, such as the closing date, closer to that time. We plan on opening the 2020-21 academic year applications in January 2021.

This page will also include the application that you will need to complete, as well as guidance notes for making a good application and details of how the panel make decisions.

Peter Coats Trust

You can apply to the Peter Coats Trust if you are a full or part-time undergraduate or postgraduate student studying in any subject area, and you are in the penultimate or final year of your course.

Your permanent home address should be in the Renfrewshire Council area and will have at some point attended secondary school in the same area.

This trust fund is available to students who have a historical or educational link to the Paisley area over a number of years, have demonstrated themselves to be diligent and academically able to complete their course successfully and are in need of a little extra financial support.

You will need to have applied to/received a decision from all statutory funding available. This includes bursaries, student loans and discretionary funds. You will also need to provide evidence demonstrating your need for this extra support, and show how it will help you throughout your studies.

We plan on opening the 2020-21 academic year applications in February 2021. If you meet the criteria and would like to apply, make a note in your diary to visit this page for more details, such as the closing date, closer to that time.

This page will also include the application that you will need to complete, as well as guidance notes for making a good application and details of how the panel make decisions.

UWS Sport Scholarship

UWS is passionate about nurturing high-performance sport and attracting talented athletes to study with us.

A UWS Sport Scholarship could help you to achieve your full academic potential and succeed in your chosen sport.

Apply for a UWS Sport Scholarship

Other Trust Funds

These are trust funds that we feel may be useful to our students, but that are externally administered.

Armed Forces Undergraduate Bursaries

If you hold a UK passport and are actively considering a career as a commissioned officer in one of the three branches of HM Armed Forces you may wish to apply for a scholarship or sponsorship under their undergraduate officer schemes.

You may be eligible for a higher grant if your degree is in a specialist or technical discipline such as physics, engineering, maths or nursing.

For further information and to apply visit:

British Kidney Patient Association Grant

This grant is suitable for students with kidney problems who are receiving dialysis or have recently had a transplant.

Further information and details on how to apply can be found on the Kidney Care UK website.

Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland

The Carnegie Trust administers a number of different schemes to different types of students. These include:

  • Undergraduate schemes such as the Undergraduate Tuition Fee Grants scheme and Vacation Scholarships
  • Postgraduate schemes such as the St Andrews Society of New York Scholarships and Carnegie-Caledonian PhD Scholarships
  • Research schemes such as Small Research Grants, Research Incentive Grants, Collaborative Research Grants, Carnegie Centenary Professorships

For further information, visit The Carnegie Trust website.

CLIC Sargent Care Grants

This Grant is specifically for families with a child or young person (24 or under) who is receiving treatment for cancer or palliative care. Suitable for undergraduate and postgraduate part or full-time students.

For further information and how to apply, visit the CLIC Sargent website.

Crichton Foundation

The Foundation offers help to students through scholarships, awards, prizes and bursaries. It offers awards and grants to students and assists the Crichton Campus partners, including Dumfries & Galloway College, University of Glasgow, University of West of Scotland, Open University, Crichton Carbon Centre and Scotland's Rural College.

For more detailed information please visit the Crichton Foundation website.

Dewar Arts Award

Set up in memory of Scotland's first First Minister, the Dewar Arts Awards provide funding to support young artistic talent living and/or working in Scotland.

To be considered for a Dewar Arts Award, applicants must:

  • be under the age of 30
  • live or work in Scotland
  • demonstrate outstanding talent in any artform
  • be without the financial means to achieve their full potential

The Trustees look for candidates who have strong ambition and a real passion for their chosen artform.

Applicants must be able to demonstrate a clear view of their future development (or that of a particular project), and how receiving a Dewar Award would help them to achieve their goals.

For more information, visit the Dewar Awards website.

Dumfriesshire Educational Trust

The Trust gives help with a number of educational expenses including travel costs, educational excursions, equipment costs, postgraduate courses and adult education.

The fund is suitable for undergraduate and postgraduate students in part-time or full-time study. Applicants must reside in Dumfriesshire and be wholly or substantially educated there.

Further information and application forms can be obtained by writing to the Trust at:

Dumfriesshire Educational Trust

Mr Robert Thom, Area Manager Nithsdale Municipal Chambers Buccleuch Street, Dumfries DG1 2AD

Gilchrist Educational Trust

The Gilchrist Educational Trust provides grants to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students attending British universities who find themselves facing unexpected financial difficulties. Grants are available to cover course costs and other associated expenses whilst studying and are usually intended to help final year learners complete their course.

Further information on eligibility can be found on the Gilchrist Educational Trust website.

Application forms can be requested via email at

Holywood Trust Bursaries

The Holywood Trust is a charitable organisation which aims to help young people in Dumfries and Galloway fulfil their potential in cultural, educational and social aspects of their lives.

For more detailed information, please visit the Holywood Trust website.

ICAS Foundation Bursaries

The ICAS Foundation provides bursary funding to eligible students studying accountancy or a finance related degree. The ICAS Foundation is a body that has been established by ICAS (Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland) to make a significant difference to academically talented young people from disadvantaged communities by helping them take their first steps into a professional career in accountancy or finance.

Young people from disadvantaged communities are under-represented at universities across Scotland and, in particular, on courses that lead to a life-long profession. ICAS, as one of the leading professional accountancy bodies in the world, believes that it can do more to open up access to the accountancy profession and has helped establish the Foundation to help do just that.

ICAS offers bursaries of up to £2,500 per academic year for students studying accountancy or a finance related subject. Students with parental income below £34,000 are eligible to apply.

Further information is available on the ICAS Foundation website.

John Watson's Trust Fund

Grants are available to under 21-year-olds with either a physical or learning disability or who are in a situation of deprivation. The Trust provides help with education and training expenses, including books, travel and cost of trips and is suitable for full-time and part-time undergraduates.

Although priority is given to individuals and groups in the Lothian region, grants can also be awarded elsewhere in Scotland.

Application forms and further information on eligibility can be obtained from the John Watson's Trust.

Macmillan Grants

A Macmillan Grant is a one-off payment for adults, young people or children with cancer, to cover a wide range of practical needs. This can include things such as heating bills, extra clothing, or a much needed break. Undergraduate and postgraduate students in part-time or full-time study who have cancer or are still affected by the illness or treatment can apply.

Further information on eligibility and how to apply is available on the Macmillan website.

Postgrad Solutions Bursaries

Postgrad Solutions Ltd is offering postgraduate study Bursaries to students starting a postgraduate course in the academic year 2020-21. Each bursary is worth £500 and they are open to students from anywhere in the world.

For more information and how to apply, please visit the Postgrad Solutions website.

Royal Caledonia Educational Trust

The Royal Caledonia Educational Trust supports the children of serving and former members of the armed forces in higher education. They have a limited pot of funds which is awarded to young people going to college or university. The College and University Students Fund can contribute towards the costs of:

  • Living expenses (Undergraduate degree only – No Masters, Phd, PGCE or Research funding available)
  • Books
  • Special Equipment
  • Essential course materials

Applications to the fund should be made directly from the young person themselves. Further information and applications are available from

Sandra Charitable Trust

The charity aims to support a wide variety of beneficiaries including nurses and charities involved in animal welfare and research, environmental protection, relief of poverty and youth development.

It is particularly suitable for nursing students who are in financial hardship and require financial support in order to complete their studies.

For further information and to apply, please email

Sidney Perry Foundation

The Foundation aims to primarily help students studying for their first degree with supplementary grants towards items such as books and equipment and instruments.

The fund is available to undergraduate and postgraduate students in part-time or full-time study who are under 35 at the start of their course. Students must be in the second year or above of a three or four-year degree course and be studying for their first degree to be eligible to apply.

For further details on eligibility and to apply, visit the Sidney Perry Foundation website.

Stirlingshire Educational Trust

The Stirlingshire Educational Trust provide grants to students who have a minimum of 5 years residence in Stirlingshire or belong there. Awards may be made towards fees, books, travel, equipment, kit etc. 

Further information and details on how to apply are available from the Trust's website.

The Cross Trust

The Cross Trust is a charitable body which gives grants to young Scots who are of merit and in financial need in order, in the words of the Trust's founder Sir Alexander Cross (1880-1963), "to extend the boundaries of their knowledge of human life."

For further information on funding available and details of how to apply, visit the Cross Trust website.

Winning Students Scholarship

This scholarship is designed to support talented student athletes as they develop their sporting abilities and continue their academic studies and foster success in international competitions.

The scholarships can be used for a range of support services which will assist you and your sporting development. The scholarships are funded by the Scottish Funding Council and managed by the University of Stirling.

Find out more about the Winning Students Scholarships

Searching for your own funds

When searching for additional financial support, it is important to understand that this can take up a lot of time. While there is no guarantee that you will find a source of funds for you, you definitely won’t find anything if you don’t try.

This type of funding can vary from small amounts, such as £200, to larger amounts that might cover your full tuition fee for a year. Most students who achieve success with these types of funds do so because they continually research and apply to everything they can. Numerous grants of £200 can really add up.

It’s also important to remember that most of these funds are competitive, similar to applying for a job. Many people might apply, but there may be only one award available. As such, it is important that you spend time on any application. Carefully follow the guidance notes and make sure your application will stand out in a crowd.

The Alternative Guide to Postgraduate Funding

The Alternative Guide to Postgraduate Funding is a web resource that UWS subscribe to, making it free for our students and prospective students to use. It includes a funding database of over 600 charities and trusts, and access comprehensive guidance on how to produce a high-quality application.

  • Accessing this guide from a campus PC? You can automatically log in without creating an account.
  • Already have a UWS email account? You can create an account in less than 30 seconds.
  • Are you a prospective student? We understand you won’t be able to access our campus PCs nor will you have a UWS email address. Simply email the Funding and Advice Team at, and we will send you a PIN to access this resource.
  • To get the most out of using this resource, check out our guide to effectively using the Alternative Guide to Postgraduate Funding.


SAAS maintain a register of educational endowments, which is just another way of saying they have a list of possible trust funds or scholarships that you may wish to investigate. Some of the schemes they have on their list include eligibility criteria, links to websites or email addresses of the organisation. Others may require you to write away for more information.

You can view the list on the SAAS website.

The Scholarship Hub

You can use The Scholarship Hub to search for UK scholarships, grants or bursaries, as well as find information on how to apply for these opportunities. You should check the website regularly as opportunities can open up throughout the year.


Prospects is a useful website offering lots of information about postgraduate study and job advice with specific information on postgraduate study funding.

Scholarship Search

You can use Scholarship Search to look for funds by organisation, subject area or level of study.

Uni Grants

You can use Uni Grants to search for funds by organisation, subject area or level of study.

The National Postgraduate Committee

The National Postgraduate Committee website contains lots of useful information, resources and guidance on postgraduate funding. You can read information they have on funding here but may also find a lot more helpful guidance on postgraduate study more generally.

Last updated: 09/09/2020